I’m sure I heard Mayor Lucas Cleveland comment a while back that the Town’s web site badly needed fixing but so far there’s no sign of anything being done. Parts of it are OK (escribe and engagecobourg) but they are quite separate web sites. Navigation is poor but that’s supposed to be remedied by a search function – except that this has not worked for some months. Part of the problem is that there are many missing items and dead links but the idea is that non-technical staff can do the work of keeping them up to date. What’s needed is a dedicated web site person – that’s in addition to a web site that works properly. And don’t give me the nonsense that web sites are not needed since we have social media.
Why web sites?
For a Town like Cobourg – or any Government body – a web site is a repository of documents like by-laws, budgets, plans, contact information. It can also be a place for news and public notices plus somewhere to pay fines, buy dog licences etc. None of these belong on Facebook or Instagram.
So why are escribe and engagecobourg OK? It’s because they are separate web sites that were designed properly.
For the record, Cobourg’s web site was designed by esolutionsgroup, now owned by GHD – they have re-branded esolutions as GHD Digital.
Light at the end of the tunnel
There’s $15,000 in the operations budget for web site maintenance and $177,000 in the capital budget – perhaps there is an RFP coming out soon? I’d suggest we aim for a new vendor.
In the meantime, you can get some – but nowhere near all – of the Town’s info on these sites:
- Cobourginternet.com – about Cobourg and living in Cobourg
- Cobourgblog.com (this site!)
- Cobourgcalendar.com – a guide to entertainment
These are my sites and they have very few (if any) dead links.
It’s not clear why other sites by esolutions are in better shape – here are some of their nearby sites:
This looks like a monopoly – time for some competition.